Kombucha’s Surprising Effect on Cholesterol
Kombucha demonstrably lowers cholesterol. In a 2011 study at Indonesia’s Padjadjaran University, the animal husbandry faculty demonstrated conclusively that for a population of ducks, increasing the percentage of Kombucha mixed with drinking water consistently lowered total cholesterol levels. LDL (commonly known as ‘bad cholesterol’) consistently decreased, and HDL (‘good cholesterol’) consistently increased for the ducks in these experiments. The researchers theorize that the presence of several particular elements of Kombucha create this effect: catechins, antioxidants that accelerate elimination of cholesterol; soluble fiber, which both inhibits the body’s absorption of cholesterol and stimulates the liver’s bile salt production; niacin (or vitamin B3), which slows production of cholesterol in the liver; and glucuronic acid, which assists the body in expelling cholesterol as waste.
Further studies have shown that Kombucha variants, likely due to their varying glucuronic acid percentages, have slightly differing efficacy in reducing cholesterol; nevertheless, they are similarly and strikingly effective. The agricultural technology faculties at Universitas Slamet Riyadi Surakarta and Gadjah Mada University discovered that rats with high cholesterol issues demonstrated reduced overall cholesterol, lower LDL, and higher HDL after adding Kombucha variants to their diets for only ten days. During the 28-day study, the rats in three Kombucha treatment groups all experienced approximately a 50% reduction in total cholesterol, and their LDL levels dropped an astounding 500%. In this study, the Kombucha variant shown to have the most significant cholesterol elimination originated from cane sugar, although all three variants demonstrated remarkable success in lowering the animals’ cholesterol levels.
Adriani L, Mayasari N, Kartasudjana RA: “The effect of feeding fermented kombucha tea on HLD, LDL and total cholesterol levels in the duck bloods [sic].” Biotechnol Anim Husb 2011;27:1749–1755.
Suhartatik N, Karyantina M, Marsono Y, Rahayu ES, Kuswanto KR: “Kombucha as Anti Hypercholesterolemic Agent (in vitro study using SD rats).” Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference of Indonesian Society for Lactic Acid Bacteria (3rd IC- ISLAB): Better Life with Lactic Acid Bacteria: Exploring Novel Functions of Lactic Acid Bacteria, 2011, Yogyakarta, Indonesia.